How to get started with Hootsuite

by | How to, Marketing

How to get started with HootsuiteMaking sure you keep up with your social media posting is a headache for many small businesses, so social media scheduling is a godsend.

There are many social media scheduling platforms you can use but one of the most popular ones is Hootsuite.

You can do a lot with a free Hootsuite account so if you’d like to try Hootsuite before buying a monthly plan, this is an ideal place to start. You may even find that you never need to upgrade.

The free Hootsuite account includes:

  • 3 social media profiles
  • 30 scheduled message at any one time
  • 1 user

But there’s obviously more functionality with the paid plans.

So how do you get started with Hootsuite

1. Create a Hootsuite account

Create your free Hootsuite account by following the prompts.

2. Add your social media profiles

With a free Hootsuite account you can connect three social media profiles to your account from these social media platforms:

  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • YouTube
  • Pinterest

Once you’ve created your account, you will see this screen where you can start connecting your social media profiles:

Connect your first social media profile

Connecting Facebook to Hootsuite

You can connect Facebook groups and Facebook pages to Hootsuite as long as you’re an admin to the group or page.

First, log into your Facebook account.

You’ll then see a screen similar to this once you’ve clicked the button to connect Facebook to your Hootsuite account:

Connect Facebook to Hootsuite

Click the ‘Continue as’ button and then authorise access to Facebook by Hootsuite by selecting ‘OK’ on a screen that looks something like this:

Authorise access to Facebook by Hootsuite

Now you need to select the Facebook group or Facebook page that you want to add to Hootsuite. The groups are at the top of the list and the pages are lower down.

Add Facebook group or page to Hootsuite

When you find the Facebook page or group you want to add, check the box next to it.

Select the Facebook page to add to Hootsuite

You now have the option to connect a Facebook ad account to Hootsuite, but this is optional and you can skip over this if you want to – I do!

Connect Facebook ad account to Hootsuite

You’re now done and your first social media profile is connected to Hootsuite.

First social profile is connected to Hootsuite

Now click on the button for the next social media profile you want to add to Hootsuite.

Connecting Instagram to Hootsuite

You will need an Instagram business account for Hootsuite to be able to auto-post to Instagram. If you have a personal profile on Instagram, you’ll either need to use the Hootsuite app on your phone to publish your scheduled posts or you can easily upgrade your Instagram account to a business account.

When you select the button to connect your Instagram account to Hootsuite, you’ll be prompted to log into your Instagram account.

Next you’ll need to give Hootsuite authorisation to access your Instagram account.

Authorise access to Instagram by Hootsuite

To enable Hootsuite to publish directly to Instagram, you’ll then need to authenticate with Facebook so you’ll need to be logged into your Facebook account. However, if you’re happy to use the smartphone Hootsuite app to manually publish your scheduled Instagram posts, you can skip this step by choosing the ‘I don’t want to publish directly’ option. However, you will need to set up the smartphone Hootsuite app.

Enable direct posting by Hootsuite to Instagram

You’ll now need to enter your Facebook password.

Log into Facebook to authenticate Instagram direct posting by Hootsuite

And now give Hootsuite access to your Facebook profile – you have to do this because Instagram is owned by Facebook.

Give Hootsuite access to Facebook to verify your Instagram account

And you’ve now successfully connected another social media profile to Hootsuite.

Successfully added another social profile to Hootsuite

Connect another social media profile to your Hootsuite account

With a free Hootsuite account, you can connect a third social media profile to your account if you want to. To do this, just follow the prompts after you’ve decided which social media profile to add.

3. Give Hootsuite some information

When you’ve connected your social media profiles to your Hootsuite account, select the green ‘Continue to Hootsuite button’.

Hootsuite will now ask you for some information.

Welcome to Hootsuite screen

And you’ll then be directed to your Hootsuite dashboard where you can start adding your streams and scheduling posts to your social media profiles.

Hootsuite dashboard ready to post